Three years ago the University for Strategic Optimism announced its auto-dissolution and simultaneous morphological transformation into the footballing order, Strategic Optimism Football.
This weekend–commencing 30th September–marks a significant triple conjunction:
- Firstly, the three year anniversary of SOF’s foundation.
- Secondly, a rare “Black Moon” in Scorpio (in transition from Harvest Moon to Blood Moon).
- Thirdly, following the 13 month lunar calendar, the regular moon-thly meeting of Deptford’s Luther Blissett Three-Sided Football League.
As is well known, Three-Sided Football builds on Asger Jorn’s invaluable research with the Danish archaeologist P.V. Glob into ancient mnemonic festivities, organised at druidic stone circle sun temples to mark the coincidence of the lunar and solar cycles every 33 years. Jorn’s crucial contribution was, of course, realising that this coincidence also unlocked the key structuring principle of European philosophy, inherited via the Egyptian hermetic orders from the East, and the Black Celt seafarers, with their megalithic architecture, from the West. In short, he demonstrated the indissoluble link between the triple-phase of Hegel’s dialectic, Kierkegaard’s “Three Stages” and the triadic structure of Quantum Chromodynamics, as first intimated by the intuitions of Niels Bohr. All three cases showed the unity of two and three—Hegel’s three-phase dialectic; Kierkegaard’s triple-stage “either/or” existentialism; and, Bohr’s quantum logic of complementarity. Jorn called this discovery “triolectics”.
The University for Strategic Optimism was the third in a line of “Invisible Colleges” including the ancestor of today’s Royal Society and Alex Trocchi’s Project Sigma. Founded in 2010, UfSO was instrumental in triggering the scandal that sparked the wave of riots and strikes beginning at Cleopatra’s Needle, London (en route to Milbank Tower) in November 2010, spreading across Europe and beyond, eventually being pacified through dissolution into the harmless Bakuninist diversions of “Occupy” a year later.
On its three-year anniversary UfSO dissolved and reformed as Strategic Optimism Football. Now, on its own three-year anniversary, coinciding, as stated, with the Black Moon (and not coincidentally, a minor stock market crash), Strategic Optimism Football enters the third phase of their Nine Year Plan.
The previous three years have seen SOF’s “amplic” phase reach its culmination: winning the Luther Blissett Deptford League on the primary “yellow”, or “aesthetic”, matrix. Following the Kabbalistic system first codified in Botoșani, Moldova, in the 1940s, by Isidore Isou, it now, upon the dawning of the Black Moon, enters its final, “chiselling” phase. This marks the final three years before the climax of the Nine Year Plan (and the next return of the Black Moon) in 2019, heralding a new era.
To mark this occasion Strategic Optimism Football famous multi-coloured “amplic” kit (conjured by drug-fuelled, footballing sex workers during an industrial painting/sploshing session on Hallowe’en) will itself undergo a transformative morphology. Watch the skies.
The following is an excerpt from the NXTPA Newsletter, Oct 2016 [vulg.]:
Following July’s successful clash between a squad of quantum physicians, sponsored by New Scientist, and assorted three-sided veterans, NXTPA operatives managed to slip past security at London’s Excel Centre to catch Oxford anthropologist Professor Robin Dunbar’s lecture on the game at September’s New Scientist Live event. We had not taken a sudden interest in number mysticism, opiates and mutual masturbation threesomes, or any of the other red herrings Dunbar threw in to distract his befuddled audience. Indeed, we have been interested in such matters for a long time. No, rather, we were keen to hear Dunbar venture that three-sided football offers direct proof of the hypothesis advanced in ‘Dunbar’s Third Law of Coincidence’. Furthermore, that three-sided variants of the game spontaneously throw up the kind of illusory correlations predicted by the so-called “Dunbar Bell-Curve”. In this regard at least, we were not disappointed.
On the 26th July 8 AP, two days before the dawning of the Proletarian New Year, the Luther Blissett Deptford League celebrated the occasion by organising a special, one-off exhibition match again a team of quantum physicists.
Practitioners of the dark arts of quantum mechanics have become increasingly interested in three-sided football of late, in the wake of SOF’s successful psychic attack on the Imperial Omphalos last November, and particularly following their stretching of the Greenwich Meridian, during the First Quantum Flux Footballum Equinox Fest in March.
This particular game saw the quantum physicists’ team of the New Scientists take on the Anti-Scientists (a veritable Bauhaus of designers) and the Dada Scientists (a lumpen mix), one balmy summer’s evening in New Cross. The game also occasioned the revival of the famed 30m hex of early LBDL matches; with teams of eight per side, it was thus also in direct contravention of Dunbar’s Bell-Curve, something that certainly made for a lively clash! The game ended in victory for the professionally-drilled Anti-Scientists, for whom extensive strategising and a slick new kit undoubtedly paid off. The motley band of assorted Situlogists and ‘Pataphysicians thrown together at the last minute as the Dada Scientists celebrated their namesake movement’s centenary by coming a respectable second. The quantum physicians of the New Scientists, however, clearly still have a lot to learn about quantum chromodynamics, trailing a sorry third after mixing up their tactics and failing to ally with the Dada squad to prevent the Anti-Scientists pulling into an unassailable lead.
Luther Blissett Deptford Three-Sided Football League 8AP Season League Tables:
The following report was first published anonymously [although credited to the NXTPA], in abridged form, on the blog of the Data Miners and Psychic Workers Union, Alytus, in November 2016 [vulg.]. It later appeared in print in DAMTP #17, January 9AP, [2017 vulg.].
Great Yarmouth Trip:
On the 30th April 8AP, representatives from the APTXN, NXTPA, FIASCo and the LPA Historification Committee convened at the road sign beneath West Ferry Gore (site of the Trivium reclaiming three-sided football match, held as part of the FQFFEF, 8AP). West Ferry Gore—occasionally referred to as West Ferry “Circus”—is a site of some significance. A Gore is the ancient name for a three-sided football pitch, originally to be found at places where three roads met. The name has a long etymology founded in medieval masonic pedagogy: In the schools of the medieval masons there was a distinction between the Trivium and the Quadrivium. The Trivium, which was generally concerned with logic, grammar and rhetoric, was at one time taught through games of three-sided football, with different teams applying different rules according to how they were assigned. This proved so popular that it became hard to persuade people to learn the more serious Quadrivium, which consisted of arithmetic, geometry, music, and astronomy. Three-sided football was thus suppressed and the Trivium was taught in a way that was indistinguishable from the Quadrivium. It is indeed for this reason that Association Football was later formerly codified by the freemasons of London—a diversion to lead the labouring classes away from the true origins of the game, replacing it with a version deriving from the masonic variants passed down through various public schools. It is no coincidence therefore, that this formal codification occurred at the Freemasons Tavern on Great Queen Street (adjacent to the Grand Lodge), on the 26 October 1863.
When famed media theorist Marshall McLuhan wrote The Classical Trivium: The Place of Thomas Nashe in the Learning of His Time as his PhD thesis, he discovered in the course of his research that one of key venues at which these early games of three-sided football were held was West Ferry Gore, on the Isle of Dogs, later immortalised by Thomas Nashe in the play of the same name. The Isle of Dogs, Nashe’s great, lost play was in fact not lost at all, but was actively suppressed, precisely because it reintroduced three-sided football into Elizabethan London. It was published with the intent of sabotaging John Dee’s programme to construct the British Empire on the principles of the Quadrivium, through his magical understanding of Euclid anchored exactly on the Isle of Dogs and the Omphalos he endeavoured to establish there. This sabotage could not be tolerated by the British Crown.
This was the reason for the Trivium reclaiming three-sided football match our operatives performed in an abandoned car park deep beneath West Ferry Gore back in March. Previously, on 21st November 8 PC (2015 vulg), Strategic Optimism Football club in conjunction with the Luther Blissett Deptford League, started to exorcise the space-time Imperial anchor at the Isle of Dogs Omphalos: where the Northwest Passage and the “Linea Regium” (or “Royal Ley”) leylines cross. This was only the start. The aforementioned Northwest Passage line also includes the West Ferry Gore as well, further connecting Glasgow and Cimetière du Père-Lachaise, Paris. The exorcism of the Omphalos and later West Ferry Gore was thus part of a wider a time loop: the first known 3SF game, played on 28th May, 1993 in Glasgow connects to Cimetière du Père-Lachaise in Paris through dead quantum lettrist (psychic worker) Isidore Isou (died on 28th July, 2007), so ending the Age of Divinity. The reason for this is obviously that each Three-Sided Football game is the same game – it folds time back on itself, to concentrate our activity in space and class by repeating it in time. It was for this reason, therefore, that we journeyed to the Gore in March, in a further stage of unbinding this line.
During the March game, we attempted an unbinding of the Gore by circling it in a counter-clock-wise rotation (signifying reproductive work). West Ferry Circus is surrounded by the clock-wise rotation traffic filled-up by corporate vehicles, guarded by security forces (destructive workers). Chased away by the security guards, who it seemed were eager to prevent our crucial mission, we were however undeterred. Instead we gained clandestine access to the lower levels of the Gore. There, as stated, in an abandoned car park three levels below the surface, we sought to unleash a counter movement, through the playing of thee-sided football. Above, the Gore secretly obtains its extra psychic powers from the binding actions of the supporting rotational traffic. Here the Trivium of the original Gore has been built over by a masonic Octagon, placed within concentric circles, forming the apex of a gigantic sundial, aligned to the shadow cast from the Canary Wharf pyramid on a specific, fateful day of the year.
That game was a qualified success, however, our mission was far from over. Following the clues in Nashe’s surviving work, our operatives were first alerted to the possibility that his famous “lost play” in fact remained intact, and had simply been hidden from the masonic authorities. Furthermore, evidence suggests this fact was known to an old mole in the Tower Hamlets highways department. Following the suppression of his play, and fearing for his life, Nashe fled to Great Yarmouth, on the East Anglian coast, then a wealthy port. Through our psychogeographical investigations, it came to our attention that a particular road sign, situated precisely beneath West Ferry Gore on the Isle of Dogs, indicates that the aforementioned Isle can be accessed via the A1026 (the sign then inexplicably displays a masonic triangle, as if its cryptic message were unclear). However, the Isle of Dogs (the place), can in fact be accessed by the A1206. The A1026, on the other hand, was formerly a road running through Great Yarmouth (now the B1141 ring road), right past the town’s famed North West Tower, to which Nashe fled! The clues began to fall into place: Firstly, Situationist references to the “Northwest Passage” clearly did not refer to de Quincey after all, but to Nashe’s hidden play. Further, someone in the Tower Hamlets highways department was aware of this and was signalling, via the sign, that The Isle of Dogs (the play), could be found by following the A1026!
With this in mind, we convened at the fateful road sign and set off for the town Nashe called the ‘Immanent Metropolis of the Red Fish’. Was this another clue? A red herring perhaps? We have yet to determine what further permutations our adventures set in motion, although sadly it seems we were unable locate the whereabouts of Nashe’s “lost play” – this time. This, despite extensive inquiries behind the bar at local pub The White Swan. But then again, if we did find it, perhaps we wouldn’t be able to speak openly about it here, for fear of meeting with similar repression from the geometic forces ranged against us!
We did, however, discover a mysterious mural in an underpass in Great Yarmouth, depicting a three-sided football pitch in the exact style of that constructed at West Ferry Gore. The mural was consequently détourned to make the providence of this illustration more readily apparent. Further, we subsequently set about playing an extensive game of triolectical football in the shadow of the North West Tower, until all the balls ended up in the river. We then enjoyed a few ales, a ramble on the beach and dreamtime on the train home. The adventure continues.
The following short text was first published on a flyer, put out by SOF, advertising an event they had co-ordinated in conjunction with the 2nd Antiuniversity Now festival, Spring 2016, and on the website of which the text also appears.
We are approaching a new model (situation) of class society where – proletarianised along the trimensions of space, time and class – strikers (i.e. destructive workers) are deprived of their power. This is exactly where three-sided football has much to teach.
Recent experiments in complexity vandalism saw moving goalposts (attached to bicyclic “fluxvehicles”) attempt to literally “stretch” the Greenwich Meridian. The aim was to trigger a quantum superpositional timeloop, catalysing a hypothesised collapse in imperialist spacetime.
As the moving goalpost modification demonstrates, even as strikers (destructive workers) are disempowered by global capital’s increasing ability to transcend the hemispheres, there occurs a simultaneous empowerment of both reproductive workers (goalkeepers) and psychic workers (three-sided football players and self-organisers generally). When their autonomy is realised, the goalkeepers (reproductive workers) can take entangled, self-organizational action, whilst the psychic workers, the ones who build up the situation, can facilitate such actions to take place. The moving goalposts (dead workers) thus offer timely (and spacey and classy) advice for further dérive (psychic workers union) transfigurations.
As three-sided football rewards the team who concedes the least, its natural rallying cry is “all power to the reproductive workers!” The contemporary game has begun to insufficiently reflect this however. By triolectically seizing and reconfiguring the goalposts (dead workers) themselves, we instantly facilitate an experimental tripling of reproductive workers’ relative power. We invite you to join in!
When: 3pm, 11th June 2016 [vulg.] (8 AP)
Where: New Cross Stadium (reopened, for one day only), Bridgehouse Meadows, SE15, (51.482131, -0.048773)
Who: This event is kindly supported by Strategic Optimism Football, Achademy of Practical Triolectics and Xenotopian Navigation, D3FC, New Cross Triangle Psychogeographical Association and Fedaration, and Internationale Autonome des Situlogistes Contemporaine. This event is part of the Antiuniversity Now festival,
9-12 June 2016, www.antiuniversity.org.
From the 19th-26th March, London will play host to the First Quantum Flux Footballum Equinox Fest! (Along with – superpositionally and in relative simultaneity – Amsterdam, Carrara, Italy and all other longitudes around the world!)
Three-sided football (3SF) is an intriguing variation of football, played with three teams on a hexagonal pitch. It was supposedly devised in the 1960s by the Danish artist Asger Jorn, in order to explain his philosophy of “triolectics”. Jorn wrote several essays explaining the concept but, as he admitted himself, struggled to define it using the written word. By providing the example of three-sided football, Jorn felt he was better able to give meaning to the flavour and texture of his method.
While it is not known whether Jorn ever participated in a real game of three-sided football, a number of matches have been played and recorded over the last twenty years. During this time the game has spiralled far beyond its mysterious origins, captivating a diverse range of players with its unique collision of sport, art and non-linear game theory. Matches have sprung up from Belarus to Bogotá, Melbourne to Malaysia, Berlin to Bilbao, yet it is the visit to London of one of 3SF’s most renowned coaches, Redas Dirzys from Lithuania, that provides us with a wonderful opportunity to now further develop this fascinating activity in several new, experimental directions at once!
For a full programme below, or download: FQFFEF Anti-Programme
Download a flyer here:
First Quantum Flux Footballum Equinox Fest (FQFFEF)
Anti-Programme, London, March 17-25th, 8 AoP (2016 Vulg.)
March 17th through 25th – General All Out FluxFootballum Coordinated Strike – Three-sided footballers of the world are invited to take over London as they see fit. Apparently random and spontaneous three-sided football matches spring up across the city. Nightly co-ordination meetings to be held 6pm, Divus, Enclave 5, 50 Resolution Way, Deptford.
- Saturday March 19th, noon – Moving the Goalposts, 3-Sided Football Match, Greenwich Observatory, intervening in the imperial control of time and space. Goals fixed to bikes, continuously changing location, rotating across the meridian, uniting east with west in a spiral motion – the onset of Jorn’s complexity vandalism.
- Sunday March 20th, noon – Quantum Superimposition London (c)Up Wahdat of 3SF Kathiral, Greenwich Park (a psychic anchor of absolute time). Superimposition of 99 players for one game of 9 teams consisting of 11 players each.
- Monday March 21st 6.30pm, The Joker, or ‘Psychogeographical’ Poker, Divus, Enclave 5, 50 Resolution Way, Deptford. Culmination of a 3 year game, played with found cards.
- Monday March 21st, Midnight – Thugs and Gorillas Match. Deptford Creek Footbridge (On Deptford-Greenwich Border), commemorating 40 year temporal superposition of George Maciunas (1975 NYC) and Martin Zet’s bone and head breaking thuggery (Deptford, 2015).
- Tuesday March 22nd Trivium Reclaiming Match, 1pm, Westferry Gore Octagon, reactivating Three-Sided Football’s pedagogical role in conveying the trivial arts, later suppressed in favour of the proto-Masonic Quadrivium.
- Thursday March 24th, (time secret), 3-Sided Exorcism of Serious Culture and White Supremacy, Tate & Lyle Gallery, London. A Zone of Proletarian Development deep in enemy territory.
- Friday March 25th BURN BABY BURN! Divus London, Enclave 5, 50 Resolution Way, Deptford. Closing Artefacts Manifestation and Fest Closing Celebration.
Coincidental Events, Unworkshops and Experiments
- March 17th-26th – Durational Unworkshop in Applied Triptography (everywhere). A triolectical form of photography. The subsequent exposures will be Situchemically developed to form a superimpositional triolectical image, doing away with the monoperspectival representation of our experiments.
- Monday March 21st, 12-3pm – Do Knot Workshop (Situationist Basket-Weaving), Henryson Road, Brockley. Practical examination of commonalities between quantum knots, the folk knots of the world and the situ-analysis of Alexandre-Théophile Vandermonde, through plastic experimentation. Topology meets Twister – Contact theNXTPA (at) gmail.com for more details.
- Wednesday March 23rd, The Knight’s Detour: Unworkshop in 3-Sided Trigomanic Chess Development & the Travelling Salesman’s Dilemma. Experimental unworkshop in the construction of n-sided chess boards and pieces (Situmetry), building upon discussions around triolectically extending Abu Zakariya Yahya ben Ibrahim al-Hakim’s Knight’s Tour and Gherasim Luca’s Cubomania – through which the chessboard is derived – into the two other forms of regular tessellation on a Euclidean plane (Hexamania and Trigomania) and beyond, towards further dimensions, into the streets and to the stars – Contact theNXTPA (at) gmail.com for details.
- Thursday March 24th – عرس مبارک पत्र: Karl Marx UrSéance देश: Highgate Cemetery काल: Vernal Equinox Full Moon 8PC – Contact: dx (at) antisystemic.org for meet up points and times.
- Friday March 25rd day/evening – Unworkshop in Situgestion (‘the Psychogeographer’s Cookbook’). ‘Recipes’, in the form of found lists and materials collected over the course of a dérive, the results of which form a set of instructions/constraints for the cooking of a meal to be shared between the participants and public at the festival closing ceremony.
- Date TBC – Introduction to Strategic Optimism Football’s Ongoing Experiments in Archaeomathematics. Ludic experiments to trial SOF’s theories as to an alternate pre-Euclidean mathematical paradigm, operative in the Neolithic era, from which 3-sided football derives. Compelling archaeological evidence demands the rigorous testing of a number of the different shaped balls that may once have been used for football, prior to their Masonic suppression in favour of the Platonic solids and the sphere – Contact strategic.optimism.football (at) gmail.com for more details).
- Date TBC – Three-Sided Football Games in the Labyrinth. Investigating the notion that the game was once common practice at labyrinths. To be tested locally at Crystal Palace Maze, the labyrinthine passages leading from Blissett Street to Greenwich Park and at historically more significant labyrinths situated at Saffron Walden, Essex and on the top of St. Catherine’s Hill in Winchester – Contact strategic.optimism.football (at) gmail.com for more details.